Creating Lists in SharePoint 2013

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Lists are the basis for storing information in SharePoint 2013. This article will describe several ways to add data to SharePoint using lists. These methods to create lists include:

1. Using a built-in list template
2. Creating a custom list
3. Importing data from an Excel spreadsheet

Using Built-in List Templates

SharePoint 2013 contains templates for creating lists that have preset columns already set with appropriate data types. They include: Tasks, Links, Announcements, Contacts, Calendar, Discussion Board, Promoted Links, Issue Tracking and Surveys. To create a list in SharePoint 2013, click Add an App from the Settings menu. Choose the appropriate list and give it a unique name.


Lists created using the SharePoint templates can be further customized to include additional columns and existing columns can be removed or altered for particular needs.

Creating a Custom List

The custom list is also an app in the Settings menu. The custom list begins with a single column named Title, which is a required text field and can contain up to 255 characters. Add additional columns using the Create Column tool on the List contextual ribbon.
There are many data types available including:
• Single line of text
• Multiple lines of Text
• Choice (menu to choose from)
• Number
• Currency
• Date and Time
• Lookup (information already on this site)
• Yes/No (check box)
• Person or Group (use to select a person/group from Active Directory)
• Hyperlink or Picture
• Calculated (calculation based on other columns in this list)
• Task Outcome
• External Data
• Managed Metadata
After selecting the appropriate data type, each data type has addition column settings available to further limit the data being entered. Columns can also be added in List Settings.
The Create Column tool in List Settings adds columns using the desired data type. The Add from Existing Site Columns tool in List Settings allows the designer to select columns from a long list of preset columns called Site Columns. This preset list contains commonly used columns and can also be customized and reused throughout the site collection. The reusability feature of Site Columns allows SharePoint content to be consistent in many lists in many sites.

Import Data from Excel Spreadsheet

Often a list in SharePoint is designed to replace a list that currently resides in Excel. The list structure as well as the data can all be imported into SharePoint. This does not create a link between Excel and the data. In this case, the Excel data serves only as the original source of the data. Changes to the new SharePoint list have no effect on the Excel spreadsheet and vice versa.
In order to import Excel data, the SharePoint URL must be added to Trusted Sites in Internet Explorer. To do this, access IE Internet Options and choose the Security Tab. Select Trusted Sites, click Sites button and Add this Site to the Trusted Sites Zone.
After adding the SharePoint site to Trusted Sites, the Excel data can be imported by adding an app called Import Spreadsheet. The designer must navigate to the Excel file location and select the data by selecting a range of cells, a table range or a named range. Based on the Excel formatting applied to the data, SharePoint will assign appropriate data types to each column, although formulas created in Excel will display in SharePoint as pasted values. SharePoint does not automatically add a link to the list to the Quick Launch navigation, but it can easily be added by changing List Name, Description and Navigation in List Settings.

SharePoint 2013 End User class

This article describes several ways to create lists using SharePoint 2013. Lists can also be created using SharePoint Designer. Creating lists and libraries is covered in a class offered by Levi, Ray & Shoup, Inc. Education Services called SharePoint 2013 End User.